IT'S OFFICIAL: WINTER IS HERE
Snow has not just fallen but is actually sticking here in Northern Michigan and although snow brings with it a stillness to the north, there is plenty of good fishing to be enjoyed.
In Traverse City, anglers report mixed results fishing downtown. Both Lake Trout and Steelhead can be found from Union Street Dam downstream to the mouth this time of year. Egg imitations are still your best bet so be sure to have some glo bugs, nuke eggs, ragg eggs, and beads with you in a variety of colors. Some anglers have also found the occasional aggressive fish willing to chase a swung or stripped fly. Don't be afraid to throw something flashy into the run, you might be surprised!
West of town, anglers fishing The Betsie and Platte are starting to see more consistent results. Using similar tactics as mentioned above, wade anglers are finding fish below The Betsie's Homestead dam and downstream from the weir on The Platte. Be sure to also have some nymphs or leech patterns in your box as the egg bite will eventually subside.
On The Manistee below Tippy dam anglers are still enjoying consistent Steelhead fishing with the occasional trout mixed in for fun. Guides are reporting fish distributed throughout the entire system from Manistee all the way up to the dam.
Troutbums still stubborn enough to be out on the Upper Manistee and Au Sable are throwing streamers looking for hungry post-spawn Brown Trout. When I was out last week we found the most success on jig style flies with lead eyes and tungsten beads up front. Most ramps are still open and car shuttle services still willing to help move your vehicles. Take a variety of colors as water was up some with a tanic stain. Black was the way to go on our last float.
There you have it friends; make some chili, layer up and hit the water! If you've always wanted to fish for steelhead, check out this article for a great place to start. Of course you're always welcome to stop in the shop and have us run you through the basics. Our guides are still our fishing daily and provide a great way to learn about fishing through the winter up here.